TR: A dark night in a city that knows how to keep its secrets, but one man is still trying to find the answers to life's persistent questions --- Guy Noir, Private Eye.
GK: It was November and I was banging on the radiator in my office (BANGING ON IRON) because it was cold as ice. Last week I took a cue from the Tea Party and I stopped paying rent until management provided more heat whereupon management turned off the heat. We're kind of in a stand-off right now, so I bought this electric heater (SFX) but I have to turn off the lights or it'll blow a fuse. (ELECT. SHORT) Dang. There goes another one. (PHONE RING, PICK UP) Yeah. Noir here.
TR (ON PHONE): Mr. Noir, it's Ben Braczewski up in Bemidji. Listen, I got a big problem.
GK: What can I do for you, Mr. Braczewski?
TR (ON PHONE): It's like this. My wife insists on us spending winter in Arizona and now she got the plane tickets changed from December 1st to today because it snowed yesterday and she says she's gotta get out of here or else she'll go nuts.
GK: Where is she?
TR: In the car, waiting for me.
GK: Aha. What you got against Arizona, Mr. Braczewski?
TR: She rented a condo in a country club. I hate golf. Bunch of morons pretending they're having fun. And I was planning on going deer hunting today. And I got a new snowblower. Fifty horsepower, enclosed cab. I can't wait to try it out. But she's sitting in the car. (CAR HONK, OFF) There she is.
GK: This sounds like an emergency.
TR (ON PHONE): What can I do?
GK: I'll jump on a plane and head up there. So you just need to stall her for a few hours.
TR (ON PHONE): But how?
GK: You know how to be confused?
TR (ON PHONE): Hey. My specialty.
GK: Act confused and slur your speech and tell her your left arm is numb. I've got a neurologist buddy up there --- Dr. Bob Barnes --- he'll put you through a few tests ---- that'll give us time to think of something.
TR (ON PHONE): Thanks. This means a lot to me. (BRIDGE)
GK: So I got myself to the airport and got the last seat on the noon flight to Bemidji. On Predator Airlines.
SS (ON P.A.): Listen up, people. I'm Betty Bracken, your flight attendant, and anybody who gets out of line, I'm gonna slap you until your head spins. Got that? Fasten your seatbelts cause it's gonna be a wild ride.
FN (ON P.A.): That's right, Betty. This is Buck Buzzhardt up in the cockpit. Flying solo today cause my copilot got dizzy on the flight down here. Anyhoo, our flight time to Bemidji gonna take about ninety-seven minutes, a little longer than normal, cause there's a herd of deer up near Aitkin and we're going down to treetop level and move em north to where my buddies are hunting up near Park Rapids. Okay. Contact! (PROPELLER START AND REV. BRIDGE)
GK: And we took off and all the deer hunters aboard were fast asleep and sure enough he put the plane into a steep dive (DIVE) and skimmed the treetops and he dropped smoke bombs (SFX) to move the deer north and then he swerved around a water tower (SFX) and we made a rough landing in Bemidji (SFX) and I took a cab straight to the hospital and found Dr. Barnes.
FN: Hey, Guy. Good to see you. Listen, I got your guy, Mr. Braczewski, in the MRI right now----- (HARSH BUZZ, DINGS, HONKS, KLAXON) ---- and what it shows is that he's in excellent health, no signs of any abnormality whatsoever.
GK: Hold him for further observation and let's think of something.
FN: Look out, here comes Barbara Braczewski. (HARD HEELS, STRIDING ANGRILY, APPROACH)
SS: You the doctor? You in the white gown? Let me see your diploma, mister. I have been sitting in that waiting room for four friggin hours and I want to know what's going on. Otherwise I am calling a lawyer.
FN: Mrs. Braczewski, look up, would you?
SS: Pardon me?
FN: Just look straight up in the air. I think I see a foreign particle in your left eye.
SS: Where? I can't see it.
FN: Look up. That's right. (STING)
GK: And in one swift move he whipped out a hypodermic and poked it in her shoulder.
SS: HEY! CUT THAT OUT! (SHE GRADUALLY LOSES CONSCIOUSNESS DURING.....) What are.... you doing? What... was... in that..... needle? Why.....do.....I.....(SHE COLLAPSES)
FN: Okay. We've got two hours to think of something. (BRIDGE)
GK: You sure you don't want to go to Arizona, sir? It's sunny there. Warm. It's green.
TR: Bemidji is so beautiful in winter. All the shades of gray and brown and white. If artists had the sense to wear warm clothes, you'd have a hundred painters sitting around town with canvases on easels. Georgia O'Keefe went to New Mexico ---- she should've come to Bemidji. Same with Matisse. The south of France has got nothing on the north woods.
GK: I looked up that country club where she rented you the condo? You'll be among celebrities.
TR: I don't care.
GK: Joan Collins, Colin Powell, Paul McCartney, Courtney Love, Olivia Newton-John, John Maddy, Muddy Waters, Joan Rivers, Mel Brooks, Mel Bay, Dinah Shore, Jim Ed Poole, the Beach Boys, the Boys of the Loch.
TR: I don't care. I want to stay here. (BRIDGE)
GK: Doctors are amazing. Whatever you want to not do, doctors can find an ailment or a syndrome that can give you a good reason not to do it.
FN: Mr. Braczewski, our tests show that you suffer from a rare allergy ---- you're experiencing sweating?
FN: Dizziness and confusion?
FN: Shakiness? Apprehension? Nervousness and anxiety?
TR: All of that.
FN: You suffer from a very rare intolerance of any living vegetative matter and until we decide on a course of treatment I recommend you remain in Bemidji at least until spring.
TR: Okay. What about Barbara? Is she going to Arizona? (BRIDGE)
GK: She did not go to Arizona. She went to the airport and she yelled at the TSA people and was put on a no-fly list and got very depressed and the doctor prescribed laughing gas and that seemed to help. (SS DEEP INHALE, THEN LAUGHTER, THEN HIGHER LAUGHTER, THEN HIGHEST LAUGHTER). And meanwhile Mr. Braczewski got to use his new snowblower (SFX). It was a beauty. Back and forth, up and down the driveway. And the neighbor's driveway. He was a happy man. Happiness is an individual thing. Sadness is all the same but happiness is different for different people. Moving snow can make some people happy. Or deer-hunting.
TR (MOVING THROUGH BRUSH): See it?
FN: See what?
TR: Up there.
FN: Up where?
TR: By the tree?
FN: Which tree?
TR: The big one.
FN: Lots of big ones.
TR: Never mind.
FN: I don't see it.
TR: It's gone now.
FN: Oh. Okay.
TR: You want to go in?
FN: I donno. If you do.
TR: I'll go in if that's what you want.
FN: It's up to you.
FN: You okay?
TR: I'm great. You okay?
FN: Never better.
TR: A dark night in a city that keeps its secrets, where one guy is still trying to find the answers to life's persistent questions...Guy Noir, Private Eye.
Lovingly selected from the earliest archives of A Prairie Home Companion, this heirloom collection represents the music from earliest years of the now legendary show: 1974–1976. With songs and tunes from jazz pianist Butch Thompson, mandolin maestro Peter Ostroushko, Dakota Dave Hull and the first house band, The Powdermilk Biscuit Band (Adam Granger, Bob Douglas and Mary DuShane).